Bacall, Bogie and The Big Sleep

By Niall McArdle

source: imdb
source: imdb

This is turning into a sad week in Hollywood. First we all reeled from the sudden death of comic legend Robin Williams, and now comes news of the death of one of the Golden Age’s sultriest actresses, Lauren Bacall, a star who will forever be associated with film noir in general and Humphrey Bogart in particular.

She carved a career for herself that endured for decades, and although she will always be remembered as Mrs Humphrey Bogart, she managed to be so much more than arm candy.

She outlived most of her peers and as a mature actress remade herself as a television and theatre performer. She was nominated for an Oscar only once, for her performance in The Mirror Has Two Faces.

She received a Lifetime Achievement Oscar in 2009, but not on the night of the Oscars. She was awarded the honorary Oscar at a prior ceremony (as is now customary for the Academy), and was given only the courtesy mention and a quick shot of her sitting in the audience on the big night. In The New Yorker the following day, Anthony Lane wondered if there wasn’t something wrong with the Academy Awards “when Kristen Stewart is allowed on stage but Lauren Bacall isn’t.”

source: vanity fair

source: vanity fair

She invested and saved her money wisely, living in elegant style in the Dakota Building in Manhattan.

source: Cathy746books

source: Cathy746books

I was planning to blog today about The Expendables 3, but it seems somehow inappropriate to prattle on about the geriatric gunslinging of Stallone & Co. today.

Instead, I am reposting a piece I wrote on one of Bacall’s most famous films, The Big Sleep. The piece was originally written for A World of Film.



Click here to read the article.

And thank you, Lauren Bacall, for everything.

4 thoughts on “Bacall, Bogie and The Big Sleep

  1. I never expected to read about The Expendables 3 and Lauren Bacall on the same page Niall!
    A worthy tribute to one of the greats of Hollywood. Good one mate.
    Regards as always, Pete.


  2. Great tribute. I did my college thesis on Bogart and ran a Howard Hawks film festival when I was a senior so Bacall loomed large in my formative years. Amazing that Bogart’s widow was still alive in 2014, after all that smoking!


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